Original Articles

Density distribution by depth of Geryon maritae on the northern crab grounds of South West Africa/Namibia determined by photography in 1983, with notes on the portunid crab Bathynectes piperitus

Published in: South African Journal of Marine Science
Volume 3, issue 1, 1985 , pages: 55–62
DOI: 10.2989/025776185784461270
Author(s): R. Melville-Smith


The density of red crab Geryon maritae between 18°00′ and 18°30′S and in depths of 350-1 000 m was quantitatively examined by photography. This area, estimated to be approximately 92 000 ha, is part of the commercial crab ground off South West Africa. The biomass of red crab, up to 55,5 kg·ha−1, is one of the highest recorded off the African coast for the species. Density of red crab was highest in depths exceeding 600 m, the greatest density (350,2 crabs·ha−1) being recorded in the 600-699 m depth zone. Another crab, Bathynectes piperitus, was also photographed in the shallower depths of the survey area (300-500 m), and some density estimates for this species at those depths are presented.

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